76

Re: What if Licence To Kill was released in the autumn of 1989?

Elephants never forget.  ajb007/biggrin

Writer/Director @ The Bondologist Blog (TBB)
On Twitter: @Dragonpol 
'Like' TBB on FB: TBB Update Page
"The man who was only a silhouette." - Ian Fleming, Moonraker (1955).

77

Re: What if Licence To Kill was released in the autumn of 1989?

American audiences didn't accept Dalton as Rhett Butler either when he starred in the miniseries Scarlett: a "sequel" to Gone With the Wind that was supposed to get massive ratings and didn't. Or maybe they didn't accept Joanne Whalley as Scarlett O'Hara. But it's notable that Dalton has never had an unqualified hit in the US.

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Re: What if Licence To Kill was released in the autumn of 1989?

Waiting to seeing ‚casual audiences‘ being mentioned......

President of the 'Misty Eyes Club'.
-------Dalton - the weak and weepy Bond!------
FIRST TO DISCOVER substantial evidence that Chew Mee is in fact not totally nude in the TMWTGG pool scenes!

79

Re: What if Licence To Kill was released in the autumn of 1989?

Barbel wrote:

My point is, as 007 himself said in the most recent movie, it's all a matter of perspective. I also suspect a certain amount of bandwagon jumping going on. There are those who have read that, say, OHMSS is a great movie and their opinions of it are starting from that viewpoint. There aren't many who've seen the series unfold in real time and whose opinions were formed along the way rather than retrospectively, and that does make a difference. (And even I'm not old enough to have seen them from the very beginning  ajb007/smile  ).

Thank god, some sanity.  Been awhile since we had a Bond-related thread in which so many opinions are presented as "facts".

Hilly...you old devil!

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Re: What if Licence To Kill was released in the autumn of 1989?

Higgins wrote:

https://ddppchicago.files.wordpress.com/2017/10/giphy.gif?w=665

Vodka Martinis all round!  ajb007/biggrin

My Top 10 Bonds: Octopussy, Goldeneye, From Russia With Love, Tomorrow Never Dies, Licence to Kill, For Your Eyes Only, The Living Daylights, Moonraker, Goldfinger and The Spy Who Loved Me.

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Re: What if Licence To Kill was released in the autumn of 1989?

Sir Hillary Bray wrote:
Barbel wrote:

My point is, as 007 himself said in the most recent movie, it's all a matter of perspective. I also suspect a certain amount of bandwagon jumping going on. There are those who have read that, say, OHMSS is a great movie and their opinions of it are starting from that viewpoint. There aren't many who've seen the series unfold in real time and whose opinions were formed along the way rather than retrospectively, and that does make a difference. (And even I'm not old enough to have seen them from the very beginning  ajb007/smile  ).

Thank god, some sanity.  Been awhile since we had a Bond-related thread in which so many opinions are presented as "facts".

Thank you, Sir Hilary.

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Re: What if Licence To Kill was released in the autumn of 1989?

Cheverian wrote:

American audiences didn't accept Dalton as Rhett Butler either when he starred in the miniseries Scarlett: a "sequel" to Gone With the Wind that was supposed to get massive ratings and didn't. Or maybe they didn't accept Joanne Whalley as Scarlett O'Hara. But it's notable that Dalton has never had an unqualified hit in the US.

There's simply no accounting for taste, especially when it comes to the US it seems!  ajb007/biggrin

Writer/Director @ The Bondologist Blog (TBB)
On Twitter: @Dragonpol 
'Like' TBB on FB: TBB Update Page
"The man who was only a silhouette." - Ian Fleming, Moonraker (1955).

83

Re: What if Licence To Kill was released in the autumn of 1989?

Higgins wrote:
Gassy Man wrote:

In the 80s and well into the 90s, movies made huge box office from repeat viewings.  I saw Batman at least twice in the theater, for instance.  There was no shortage of box office dollars to be earned with the right film.  But just as audiences might pay to see one film two or three times, they might ignore another they thought wasn't worth it.

ajb007/cheers  totally agree.

I have never understood the ‚competition argument‘.
Seeing movies in the cinemas was a main activity back then because nothing like it was shown on tv.

When your favorite musician released a new album, you bought it, no matter what the competition (new or established) brought - unless word of mouth was, that the new album was crap - which brings us back to the initial argument.

If there where 4 or 5 good movies, our choice was not, which one we don‘t want to see.
In my opinion, several good movies lift the market up and don‘t put single good movies down.

It‘s only the bad movies that suffer from competition!

In 1989, the cost of a movie ticket at the premier theater with bigger screens and better sound was about $5.  At the cheaper theaters -- such as AMC -- it was about $3.50.  Matinees were even cheaper at either theater -- I recall seeing many films for $2 or $3 during the week or earlier in the day on weekends.  Beyond that, after a few weeks, many movies moved on to budget theaters, where the ticket prices were $1 or so. 


To put that in perspective, minimum wage in the U.S. was $3.35 an hour, but many of us teens and young adults were making more than that.  You could easily do a date at the movies for less than $10.

Teens in the 80s and early 90s routinely went to movies, and they were a substantial part of the audience sought.  It generally took many months for the same films to make it to cable or home video and then usually a year or more to broadcast TV.  So, going to the movies was pretty much the only way to see the film for a long period. 

It's what we did.  It was cheap entertainment, and it's where our friends would be. 

The argument that competition alone sucked money away from movies mostly affected smaller films and, as you say, bad movies.  People just didn't waste their time.  And Hollywood counted on repeat viewings for revenue.  That's one reason they started pushing sequels and franchises so much.  They knew chances are the fanbase would keep paying to see the same thing.

Movie dollars are fungible.  The home video market was born because of it -- the idea that people would pay to rent or purchase a movie that they may have already seen.  The idea that somehow people would limit their movie spending to some finite amount defies the reality of the time, at least for many people. 

People avoided Licence to Kill and Timothy Dalton out of conscious effort, not because the marketing somehow didn't magically hypnotize them into the theater.  He was not a popular Bond here, and his movies just didn't draw audiences like his predecessors.

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Re: What if Licence To Kill was released in the autumn of 1989?

Sir Roger was one hell of an act, to have to follow  ajb007/martini

“I didn’t lose a friend, I just realised I never had one.”

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Re: What if Licence To Kill was released in the autumn of 1989?

So that's what happened!?!  Grandaunt Thelma couldn't have called it better!!!  ajb007/lol

"...the purposeful slant of his striding figure looked dangerous, as if he was making quickly for something bad that was happening further down the street." -SMERSH on 007 dossier photo, Ch. 6 FRWL.....

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Re: What if Licence To Kill was released in the autumn of 1989?

Just wanted to add to GM‘s excellent analysis.

Main target group for Bond and most other Action Movies of the time was young men.
They had normally other worries than getting a babysitter at home  ajb007/biggrin
At best they took the babysitter out for a date and watched a 007 movie among other things  ajb007/biggrin
I certainly did  ajb007/biggrin

President of the 'Misty Eyes Club'.
-------Dalton - the weak and weepy Bond!------
FIRST TO DISCOVER substantial evidence that Chew Mee is in fact not totally nude in the TMWTGG pool scenes!

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Re: What if Licence To Kill was released in the autumn of 1989?

ajb007/cheers

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Re: What if Licence To Kill was released in the autumn of 1989?

If American audiences didn't like TLD - a serious, espionage film - then they may well not have checked out LTK, even though that could have been more to their taste. So the relative failure of LTK may not be that film.

Regardless, there are fans who love both films. I certainly do. A friend of mine does too. It's in both our top tens. So it's hardly Santa Claus Conquers the Martians.

My Top 10 Bonds: Octopussy, Goldeneye, From Russia With Love, Tomorrow Never Dies, Licence to Kill, For Your Eyes Only, The Living Daylights, Moonraker, Goldfinger and The Spy Who Loved Me.

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Re: What if Licence To Kill was released in the autumn of 1989?

Still trying to find alternative realities while still ignoring the elephant  ajb007/lol  ajb007/lol

President of the 'Misty Eyes Club'.
-------Dalton - the weak and weepy Bond!------
FIRST TO DISCOVER substantial evidence that Chew Mee is in fact not totally nude in the TMWTGG pool scenes!

90

Re: What if Licence To Kill was released in the autumn of 1989?

Higgins wrote:

Still trying to find alternative realities while still ignoring the elephant  ajb007/lol  ajb007/lol

Even if the Americans didn't take to Dalton, it doesn't mean they think he was "weepy" and "weak" like you do. There isn't a single scene in either of his films in which he cries, so your obsession witht that idea is crazy.

Both films are great  ajb007/smile

Last edited by DavidJones (10th Sep 2019 20:05)

My Top 10 Bonds: Octopussy, Goldeneye, From Russia With Love, Tomorrow Never Dies, Licence to Kill, For Your Eyes Only, The Living Daylights, Moonraker, Goldfinger and The Spy Who Loved Me.

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Re: What if Licence To Kill was released in the autumn of 1989?

You find Dalton great, I find him weepy.
I can live with that.

What is laughable how you are ignoring that wide parts of audiences did not accept Dalton and pull one crazy explanation after another why his movies did so badly.
Have you checked and compared weather charts, lunar calendars and fuel prices yet?
Maybe there is a pattern  ajb007/lol  ajb007/lol  ajb007/lol

Seems that everybody and everything is to blame but not Dalton.

Carry on, it‘s really entertaining  ajb007/lol  ajb007/lol

President of the 'Misty Eyes Club'.
-------Dalton - the weak and weepy Bond!------
FIRST TO DISCOVER substantial evidence that Chew Mee is in fact not totally nude in the TMWTGG pool scenes!

92

Re: What if Licence To Kill was released in the autumn of 1989?

Higgins wrote:

You find Dalton great, I find him weepy.
I can live with that.

What is laughable how you are ignoring that wide parts of audiences did not accept Dalton and pull one crazy explanation after another why his movies did so badly.
Have you checked and compared weather charts, lunar calendars and fuel prices yet?
Maybe there is a pattern  ajb007/lol  ajb007/lol  ajb007/lol

Seems that everybody and everything is to blame but not Dalton.

Carry on, it‘s really entertaining  ajb007/lol  ajb007/lol

All I'm saying, friend, is that they didn't neccessary dislike him in the same way you dislike him. I admit that LTK was not as successful as it was expected to be, and that it underperformed by a wide margin, by I still personally like the film and it's one of my favourites. And I maintain that you will not find a single scene in either film in which Dalton weeps.

A more interesting question - instead of us going round in circles - is what do you think would have worked instead of it? Another actor in the role (perhaps one of the others who were considered - Antony Hamilton, Neil Dickson, Simon MacCorkindale etc)? A plot which didn't involve drugs?

My Top 10 Bonds: Octopussy, Goldeneye, From Russia With Love, Tomorrow Never Dies, Licence to Kill, For Your Eyes Only, The Living Daylights, Moonraker, Goldfinger and The Spy Who Loved Me.

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Re: What if Licence To Kill was released in the autumn of 1989?

Just watch the TLD balloon popping scene and find yourself proven wrong again....

Brosnan was the first choice back then, but was unfortunately not available.
He‘d have pulled the franchise up instead of down.

President of the 'Misty Eyes Club'.
-------Dalton - the weak and weepy Bond!------
FIRST TO DISCOVER substantial evidence that Chew Mee is in fact not totally nude in the TMWTGG pool scenes!

94

Re: What if Licence To Kill was released in the autumn of 1989?

Higgins wrote:

Just watch the TLD balloon popping scene and find yourself proven wrong again....

Brosnan was the first choice back then, but was unfortunately not available.
He‘d have pulled the franchise up instead of down.

That balloon moment is one of the best in the whole series. He's angry and frustrated, but he isn't crying. Unless there you can see at least one tear running down his cheek, which you can't.

You've uploaded GIFs before now in which you have had to digitally insert tears onto his face, thereby proving that there wasn't any there to begin with.

To continue with the 'How Could It Have Been Better' angle, which would be the friendliest way for this conversation to continue, I'd say that the drugs thing is probably not in keeping with the grand scope of a Bond film. Admittedly, this mission wasn't instigated by M16, and Bond would have gone after Sanchez even if the guy had been selling fake disabled badges for cars.

Do you think a film along the lines of AVTAK or TSWLM would have been better received?

My Top 10 Bonds: Octopussy, Goldeneye, From Russia With Love, Tomorrow Never Dies, Licence to Kill, For Your Eyes Only, The Living Daylights, Moonraker, Goldfinger and The Spy Who Loved Me.

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Re: What if Licence To Kill was released in the autumn of 1989?

DavidJones wrote:

You've uploaded GIFs before now in which you have had to digitally insert tears onto his face, thereby proving that there wasn't any there to begin with.

Calling you BS on this.
I have never inserted tears into a .gif
I don‘t even know how to do that  ajb007/biggrin

Feel free to prove me wrong.

And that‘s exactly the issue.
Whenever Dalton plays ‚emotions‘, his eyes get wet and that‘s the only thing that he really can do.
That‘s why I am calling him weepy - it‘s not necessary that tears are running down his cheeks.

His constant weeping is annoying an pathetic, Bond should not be like that.
Just look how Roger did serious scenes - and now compare how weepy Dalton did them.

President of the 'Misty Eyes Club'.
-------Dalton - the weak and weepy Bond!------
FIRST TO DISCOVER substantial evidence that Chew Mee is in fact not totally nude in the TMWTGG pool scenes!

96

Re: What if Licence To Kill was released in the autumn of 1989?

Higgins wrote:
DavidJones wrote:

You've uploaded GIFs before now in which you have had to digitally insert tears onto his face, thereby proving that there wasn't any there to begin with.

Calling you BS on this.
I have never inserted tears into a .gif
I don‘t even know how to do that  ajb007/biggrin

Feel free to prove me wrong.

And that‘s exactly the issue.
Whenever Dalton plays ‚emotions‘, his eyes get wet and that‘s the only thing that he really can do.
That‘s why I am calling him weepy - it‘s not necessary that tears are running down his cheeks.

His constant weeping is annoying an pathetic, Bond should not be like that.
Just look how Roger did serious scenes - and now compare how weepy Dalton did them.

In that case, I apologise whole-heartedly. A case of mistaken identity. I don't know how to work GIFs either ajb007/smile

Thank you for clarifying the weepy thing, though I don't know how Dalton would be able to bring moisture to his eyes on cue. It isn't impossibly - Daily Ridley apparently cried for her Star Wars audition - but there must be some spray they put on, if it is indeed there at all.

Agreed, Roger handled the serious scenes well and he doesn't get remembered enough for those. A favourite of mine is the one with Orlov in OP.

The balloon scene, teary-eyed or not (and I've never noticed it myself) is a good scene regardless. He and Saunders rubbed each other up the wrong way, and then they began to appreciate each other's methods. By the time Saunders dies, Bond respects him, so he's livid. It's the sort of boiling anger which shows he isn't always cold-blooded; it's sometimes personal. This, of course, leads into LTK. That whole film is basically an extended version of the balloon scene. I can see why they went the vigilante route, as the Death Wish films were popular and resulted in various rip-offs. I wouldn't argue too much, though, if someone believes such grisly films are outside the purview of what Bond should be.

My Top 10 Bonds: Octopussy, Goldeneye, From Russia With Love, Tomorrow Never Dies, Licence to Kill, For Your Eyes Only, The Living Daylights, Moonraker, Goldfinger and The Spy Who Loved Me.

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Re: What if Licence To Kill was released in the autumn of 1989?

For the record, I don't mind Dalton.  I actually think he did much more with the role than Brosnan, and he was the first actor to approach the character from a literary rather than a cinema perspective.  For me, the problem was his films were miscalculations.  The Living Daylights is actually pretty solid, weakened only by two boring villains.  Licence to Kill might have fared better in 1981 or 1983, when the whole Latin American drug cartel issue was fairly new.

In fact, Dalton would have probably found more success if he'd taken the role in 1981, debuting in For Your Eyes Only.  The follow up could have been Licence to Kill and then The Living Daylights.  Moore could have gone out on a high note with Moonraker.

But that's not what happened, and Americans in particular never found Dalton very appealing.  Perhaps his long face and saturnine looks didn't make him attractive enough, or maybe it's because while he's terrific playing intense emotions like anger and determination, he's not so good at the softer emotions.  When he tries to look like he's having fun, he often just seems goofy and uncomfortable.  Another problem is that there's always a darkness to his characterizations; even when playing a good guy he seems more like he is the bad guy.

I actually thought he could play Bond when at age 12 I saw him in Flash Gordon.  I didn't know then that he'd been considered for the role. 

Dalton got half of James Bond right, which is the semi-tragic, sometimes conflicted character from the books.  He got the other half wrong, which is the cinematic character who not only seems to be having a good time, but who lives for that reason.  By investing so much in the former, he forgot the latter, and they had to compromise with the movies, making them more like character studies in some ways that Bond movies, even with the few attempts to be light-hearted and fantasy-driven.  The 1980s weren't the decade for that.

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Re: What if Licence To Kill was released in the autumn of 1989?

"It seemed fresh at the start of the 80s, when movies like Scarface were popular, but by the end, people were tired of it"

Same thing with Fist of Fury in '72 , it started a trend....... then came many other China vs Japan films : Hapkido , When TKD strikes , FoF II & III , New FoF etc

Jaws also started a monster movie trend

"Honey I Shrunk the Kids, The Karate Kid III,  and When Harry Met Sally

IMO , LTK are just as good or better than these films imo

Last edited by Grindelwald (12th Sep 2019 08:16)

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Re: What if Licence To Kill was released in the autumn of 1989?

Gassy Man wrote:

[He] got half of James Bond right, which is the semi-tragic, sometimes conflicted character from the books.  He got the other half wrong, which is the cinematic character who not only seems to be having a good time, but who lives for that reason.  By investing so much in the former, he forgot the latter, and they had to compromise with the movies, making them more like character studies in some ways that Bond movies, even with the few attempts to be light-hearted and fantasy-driven.

I'm not saying this doesn't apply to Dalton, but you could well be describing Craig here too.

My Top 10 Bonds: Octopussy, Goldeneye, From Russia With Love, Tomorrow Never Dies, Licence to Kill, For Your Eyes Only, The Living Daylights, Moonraker, Goldfinger and The Spy Who Loved Me.

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Re: What if Licence To Kill was released in the autumn of 1989?

Except for

1)  Timing.  People were still looking to Bond for high fantasy in the 80s.  They wanted glitz and glamour, jokes and elaborate set pieces.  Bond was only half way through its run then.  A more personal Bond wasn't what they wanted on the menu.  It might have worked if Dalton had taken over in 1981, but by 1987, it was both too late and too early.  In terms of being hard-edged fantasy, movies like Die Hard just did the same thing better.  In fact, Die Hard is just the last 15 minutes of every Bond movie stretched out.

2)  Dalton isn't Craig.  That may seem like a Coke versus Pepsi argument to some people, but though the general idea may be the same, the details count.  People didn't like Dalton as much as Craig.

3) Dalton's film's never felt like they were completely committed.  John Glen's journeyman directing, though a little better with Dalton's films than Moore's perhaps, nonetheless still felt like compromises.  He'd worked mostly during Moore's tenure, and he couldn't quite give up the Moore elements.  Maybe if they'd worked harder to play to Dalton's strengths, that might have improved the films, but the aforementioned weaknesses in his acting stood out by putting him into situations where he had to emote.

4)  Craig's Bonds are much more tailored to his acting style, and the directors approach them as A films.